Ramona Diaz is an award-wining Asian-American filmmaker best known for her compelling character-driven documentaries that combine a profound appreciation for cinematic aesthetics and potent storytelling. Ramona's films have demonstrated her ability to gain intimate access to the people she films - be they rock stars, first ladies, dissidents, or teachers - resulting in keenly observed moments and nuanced narratives that are unforgettable. She has received funding from major agencies such as the Independent Television Service (ITVS), the Sundance Documentary Fund, MacArthur Foundation, Tribeca Institute, the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM), and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Prior to pursuing a career as an independent filmmaker, Diaz was an associate producer for Cadillac Desert, a major PBS documentary series about the quest for water in the American West. In 2005, Diaz broadened her repertoire to include television commercial directing and producing. Diaz is a graduate of Emerson College, Boston and holds an MA in Communication from Stanford University. Ramona's production company, CineDiaz, currently has a slate of feature documentaries and feature films at various stages of production and development.
ABOUT THE WORK
Ramona's credits include Spirits Rising, an hour-long documentary about women's role in the 1986 People Power revolution in the Philippines. Spirits Rising received a Student Academy Award, the Ida Lupino Director's Guild of America Award, a Golden Gate Award from the San Francisco International Film Festival, and a Certificate of Merit from the International Documentary Association.
IMELDA, a full-length documentary about the former First Lady of the Philippines, garnered the Excellence in Cinematography Award for documentary at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival and the ABCNews Videosource Award from the IDA. The film had its US theatrical premiere at the Film Forum in New York City and was later released nationally in the United States and abroad. In Manila, it grossed more than Superman 2 its opening weekend. Imelda screened in over thirty film festivals around the world and was broadcast on Independent Lens in May 2005.
THE LEARNING, another full-length documentary that follows several Filipino teachers in Baltimore City across two school years, chronicling the sacrifices they make as they try to maintain a long-distance relationship with their children and families, and begin a new one with the mostly African-American students whose schooling is now entrusted to them. The film was funded by ITVS, Sundance Documentary Fund and the Center for Asian American Media and was nominated for a Humanitas Award by the International Documentary Association. The Learning was part of POV's 24th season on PBS.
DON'T STOP BELIEVIN': EVERY MAN'S JOURNEY is a feature length documentary film about the iconic 80's band, Journey, and their new lead singer, Arnel Pineda, whom they discovered through You Tube. The film premiered at a gala screening at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival, was closing night film of the San Francisco International Film Festival. and the opening night film of 2012 Silverdocs Film Festival. It won the audience awards at the Traverse, New Hampshire and Palm Springs International Film Festivals and had its international premiere at the Dubai International Film Festival. The film was released theatrically and on all digital platforms including Amazon, iTunes, and Video on Demand. It will be broadcast on Independent Lens in September 2013.